Traversing the Heart

Journeys of the Inter-religious Imagination


The key wager of Traversing the Heart - Journeys of the Inter-religious Imagination is that a spiritual imaginary operating at the level of metaphor, narrative, symbol and epiphany can traverse the borders of dogma and ideology and open genuine conversations between wisdom traditions. Like every hermeneutics of the heart, this journey begins to unfold in a concrete space and time: the interreligious conference at Bangalore in June 2007. While this collection does not claim to cover the religious traditions of all continents, its concluding essay on transculturation in Andean-Christian art highlights the importance of the North-South dialogue as a necessary supplement to the East-West one largely addressed in the book. As a call to future journeys and dialogue, this volume aims to communicate the one seminal lesson learned during the India conference: that in our third millennium, religions will be inter-religious or they will not be at peace.
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Biographical Note

Richard Kearney, Ph.D. in Philosophy, University of Paris (1980), holds the Charles B. Seelig Chair of Philosophy at Boston College. He is the author of over 20 books on European philosophy and literature and has edited 15 more. His most recent work is Anatheism: Returning To God After God (Columbia University Press, 2010)

Eileen Rizo-Patron, Ph.D. in Comparative Literature, Binghamton University (2006), has worked as a visiting scholar and editor at Boston College since 2006. She has published several articles on Gaston Bachelard's poetics of imagination and on the role of oneirics in testimonial literature. Her English translation of Gaston Bachelard's seminal book on time, Intuition Of The Instant, is forthcoming (Northwestern University Press, 2010).

Review Quotes

As I put down this marvelous book [...] it seemed to me that this is a book that one reads over the years, during the various moods of one’s life. Its contents are vast and its heart, the guha that allows so many surprises and so many discoveries to grow in the hospitality of a welcoming, generous imagination, gives this book an endurance far beyond the circumstances that occasioned it. Its contents are unusually willing to surrender the professional armor that too often confuses academic rigor with rigor mortis. - Jason Wirth, Seattle University.

The book accomplishes some difficult feats. It combines methodical rigor with a complete lack of religious skepticism; it combines close reading and pilgrimage; it expresses personal enthusiasms without embarrassing the authors or (this) reader; and it demonstrates that, on the oldest questions, our best learning will come from our others. - Simone Roberts, in: Common Knowledge 19:1 (2013).


Students and scholars in Theology, Comparative Religion, History of Religions, Interfaith Dialogue, Meditation Practice, Philosophy, Literature, and Fine Arts.

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